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Guide to the

UNION BOWER SCHOOL PTA SCRAPBOOKS
1949-1963

1 linear ft.

Accession Number: 0405-130

Collection Number: 52

Prepared by Kevin Kendro
August 2006

CITATION: The Union Bower School PTA Scrapbooks, Collection 52, Volume number, Irving Archives, Irving Public Library.

Historical Sketch

     Union Bower was an unincorporated community located about two miles northeast of Irving and about a mile west of the Elm Fork of the Trinity River.  Pioneer settlers came to the area during the mid-19th century.  Local residents donated land for a community school, which opened in 1891.  For many years, the school was funded directly by the members of the community.  It later became part of the Dallas County Common School District.

     In 1935, the Dallas County Common School District and the Works Progress Administration funded the construction of a brick school building for the Union Bower community.      

     The Union Bower School P.T.A. was organized during the 1936-1937 school year.  At that time, the school had about 80 pupils and three teachers.  The school offered grades one through eight.  High school students attended school in Dallas or Irving.  Fifteen people attended the organizational meeting at which Mrs. Fay Shutt, the fifth and sixth grade teacher, was elected to be the group’s first president.  During the post WWII years, the community and school began increasing in size.  During the 1950s, the Union Bower School had an enrollment of between 200-250 students.

     Through the years the Union Bower P.T.A. provided the school with material such as playground equipment, a piano, books, record players, and fans.  The P.T.A. also sponsored the boys’ baseball team and girls’ softball and basketball teams.

      The city of Irving annexed the Union Bower community in the mid-1950s.  The school remained a part of the Dallas County Common School District until 1963, when the Irving Independent School District took it in.  The Union Bower P.T.A. was dissolved at that time.  The brick school building, which had been constructed in 1935, was used as a grade school by the Irving Independent School District until 1971.

Source: The Union Bower School P.T.A. Scrapbooks, Collection 52, Irving Archives, Irving Public Library.  The Union Bower community research file in the Irving Archives, Irving Public Library.

Scope and Content Note

     The Union Bower School P.T.A. Scrapbooks are arranged in one series consisting of four scrapbooks.  The collection is housed in one cubic foot box.  The scrapbooks span the years 1949-1963.  There is a gap in the collection for the 1954-1955 and 1955-1956 school years.  The scrapbooks document the activities of the Union Bower School P.T.A. through newspaper clippings, yearbooks, newsletters, and a few photographs.  The newspaper clippings relate primarily to the actions of the Dallas City Council of P.T.A.s and make up the bulk of the material.  The Union Bower School P.T.A. was a member of the Dallas City Council of P.T.A.s, which consisted of P.T.A.s from throughout the county.  Some of the articles relate to the activities of the Union Bower School P.T.A. specifically.     

     Volume 1, 1949-1954, is in poor condition.  The pages are brittle and are flaking.  A photocopy of the scrapbook has been made for preservation purposes.  The minutes of the meetings are recorded directly on the pages of this scrapbook.  There are a few photos showing the faculty, team photos, and some club photos.  There is also a spiral bound notebook containing the minutes of the executive board meetings and regular meetings from the 1953-54 school year.

     In addition to the material mentioned above, the remaining three scrapbooks contain officer rosters, a summary of each year’s events, lists of past presidents, and program highlights for each year.  Most of the pages of Volume 2 were loose in the cover of the scrapbook when received.  They appear to be somewhat out of order, but there is not enough chronological information on the pages to be able to accurately reconstruct the order, so the order of the pages when received has been maintained.  Although Volume 2 is labeled 1956-1957, the material in the book covers the 1956-1957 and 1957-1958 school years.  There is also some material from 1959 in the scrapbook.

     Volume 3 covers the 1958-1959 and 1959-1960 school years. Volume 4 covers the 1960-1961, 1961-1962, and 1962-1963 school years.  The mimeographed newsletters in this volume have faded, so a darkened photocopy of each has been made and placed on the same page as the original in the scrapbook.  In the fall of 1963, the Union Bower School became part of the Irving Independent School District, and the Union Bower School P.T.A. was dissolved. 

Provenance Statement

     The Union Bower P.T.A. Scrapbooks, accession number 0405-130, were donated to the Irving Archives on, April 21, 2005, by the Irving Independent School District Council of P.T.A.s.  The Union Bower scrapbooks came in as part of a donation that also contained scrapbooks of the Irving Independent School District Council of P.T.A.s.  The processing archivist separated the Union Bower scrapbooks and processed them as an individual collection.  Prior to their donation to the Irving Archives, the scrapbooks were in the possession of the Irving Independent School District Council of P.T.A.s.

Literary Rights Statement

     Permission to publish from the Union Bower P.T.A. Scrapbooks must be obtained from the Irving Archives, Irving Public Library.

Container List   

Series I. Scrapbooks

Box 1

Volume

  1     Scrapbook, 1949-1954
Contains information pertaining to the 1949-1950, 1950-1951, 1951-1952, 1952-1953, and 1953-1954 school years.  Meeting minutes are written on the scrapbook pages, except that the minutes for the 1953-1954 year are written in a spiral bound notebook.  Most of the newspaper articles address education issues from around the country.

  2     Scrapbook, 1956-1958
The book is labeled 1956-1957, but it contains information from the 1956-1957 and 1957-1958 school years.  There is also a small amount of material from 1959. Most of the pages were not attached to the scrapbook when it was received.  Some of the pages appear to be out of order, but there is not enough chronological information on the pages to determine a correct order, so the scrapbook pages were left in the order in which they were received. 

  3     Scrapbook, 1958-1959
Contains information from the 1958-1959 school year.

  4     Scrapbook, 1960-1963
Contains information from the 1960-1961, 1961-1962, and 1962-1963 school years.